Toss in nasty bluesy riffs, a taste of juke joint swagger, and a little gospel for good measure then top of with sultry vocals and you have The House of Mercy from Bex Marshall. Since a mere child Ms. Marshall has honed her skills belting out tunes and playing guitar for friends and family. After years of learning different guitar styles she has become a musical chameleon and can effortlessly incorporate this into her songs. On her latest record she does just that as her guitar playing takes on characteristics from the slide of Duane Allman, the jazziness of Django Reinhardt, the ragtime of Arthur “Blind” Blake and the soulfulness of Johnny “Guitar” Watson. Mixed with a voice that reminds me of Bonnie Raitt and there is a lot to like about House of Mercy.
Eleven tracks of pure blues nastiness, the album traverses its way through a plethora of sounds creating a group of individual tunes that create one solid piece of music. Marshall welcomes the listener to “The House of Mercy” with the self titled open track full of guitars and a bit of banjo. It opens the door enticing folks to enter and check out the rest of the album. Showcasing her varied abilities and highlighting the record are tunes such as “Bourbon Street” a southern rocker, “Bite Me” a sultry blues tune and “Guilty” an upbeat jazzy number.
From start to finish Marshall has assembled an album that is a fun listen and a fine exhibition of guitar playing "& song crafting. Give House of Mercy a listen you will enjoy it.